High Quality Content by WIKIPEDIA articles! Dunnottar Castle (from Scottish Gaelic Dun Fhoithear, "fort on the shelving slope") is a ruined medieval fortress located upon a rocky headland on the north-east coast of Scotland, about two miles (3km) south of Stonehaven. The surviving buildings are largely of the 15th-16th centuries, but the site is believed to have been an early fortress of the Dark Ages. Dunnottar played a strategic role in the history of Scotland from the Middle Ages through to the Enlightenment, because of the location: it overlooked the shipping lanes to northern Scotland; and is situated on a narrow coastal terrace that controlled land access to the coastal south via Portlethen Moss to Aberdeen during the medieval period. The site, owned by private interests, is open to the public, visited annually by hundreds of thousands of tourists.